One consequence of uncontrolled blood sugar levels is the nerve damage (neuropathy) that occurs that can lead to problems such as pain, tingling, and numbness in the affected areas. While there are a number of medications that reduce the discomfort associated with diabetic neuropathy, there are two supplements that may provide relief without causing the unpleasant side effects associated with pharmaceutical drugs.
Acetyl-L-carnitine is a substance naturally produced by the body from an amino acid called L-carnitine. This antioxidant assists with food metabolization as well as the production of acetylcholine, which is a neurotransmitter critical for healthy mental function. As such, acetyl-L-carnitine is frequently administered to people suffering from neurological disorders, such as Alzheimer's Disease and age-related cognitive decline.
However, research indicates this substance can help reduce pain associated with neuropathy. In one 52-week study, patients taking 1,000 mg of acetyl-L-carnitine experienced significant reduction in pain, and the substance even appeared to help regenerate some nerve fibers.
Since acetyl-L-carnitine is manufactured from L-carnitine, eating foods high in the amino acid can increase the amount produced in the body. Beef, milk, codfish, chicken breast, and cheddar cheese are all good sources of L-carnitine. However, you can also ingest acetyl-L-carnitine as a regular oral dietary supplement. Be aware, though, that some people have experienced mild side effects such as nausea, dry mouth, and headache. Additionally, people who suffer from seizures should avoid this supplement as it can increase the risk and severity of those neurological events.
Many people may not realize this, but a lack of b-vitamins in the diet can acerbate—and even cause—neuropathy in the body. That's because this group of vitamins (b1, b6, and especially b12) are critical for preventing damage to the cells and protecting nerve endings. Additionally, studies indicate B vitamins can promote healthy nerve tissue repair, which may be why it helps alleviate pain and inflammation caused by neuropathy.
B-vitamins can be found in a number of foods, such as salmon, fortified cereals, leafy greens, liver, eggs, and milk. If you're vegan, vegetarian, or have other food restrictions that inhibit your ability to obtain these vitamins from your diet, you can use over-the-counter pills or powders to get what you need. Be careful to stick to the recommended daily amounts, as overconsuming b vitamins can actually aggravate nerve pain in some cases and lead to other problems, such as abdominal cramps, blurry vision, and skin problems.
For more information about treating diabetic neuropathy with supplements, consult with your healthcare provider. For help finding the NuMedica supplements or other supplements you need at affordable prices, visit an online or offline health and wellness store.